Town Clerk's Office, Church Lane, Blandford Forum, Dorset, DT11 7AD

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Wash Hands Cover Face Make Space

Office Reopening Arrangements

The Town Council office staff have continued to work, both from home and in the office, throughout the lockdown period and have been able to respond to all enquiries received to date.

However, should you need to visit the office in person, we can arrange to meet you during the opening hours of 9:30am to 12:30pm, Monday to Friday.

To make an appointment please contact us, with details of your requirements, by email admin@blandfordforum-tc.gov.uk or telephone 01258 454500.

Here are some contact details that may be of use to you:

UK Government website: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Dorset Council: Please click here for the Dorset Council’s dedicated webpage with their latest updates and advice on the coronavirus. Alternatively you can e-mail communityresponse@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk or telephone 01305 221000.

If you don’t have family, friends or a support network that can help you get the things you need, you can call Dorset Council to get specific help and advice.

Blandford Forum Town Council

The Town Council has directly contacted vulnerable/elderly people that we are aware of, offering support and assistance. We have a small team of staff and Councillors, some of whom need to shield, but we have three vehicles and some resources, and we would like to help residents as much as we can. Along with the Dorset Council, there are various groups and organisations already supporting local communities on a daily basis. In addition, we know many of you have neighbours, friends and family, who are offering their support, but it may be that you are not in that situation and you might prefer to approach your local council rather than open the door to a complete stranger. If you are, or you know of anyone, in a position where you are having to shield, it can be difficult breaking routines and losing regular contact with people. We appreciate that it can be lonely not having someone to talk to so please do not hesitate to call us on 01258 454500 or 01258 489490, but please note that we are unable to give any medical advice. We can also collect things that you may need, pick up some shopping, lend you some books or get a newspaper, to assist you during this time. There are lots of local businesses who may be able to help you with services such as dog walking and some local shops, cafés and restaurants are offering a home delivery service for you, so do call us if you’re not sure which ones are and we can find out for you and put you in touch.

The Town Council has postponed its events until further notice and is holding its meetings online.

All hirers cancelling their sessions/events were/are offered a full refund. The Town Council has resolved not to impose its booking conditions in this unprecedented situation in order to lessen the impact on the small businesses and organisations that use council venues.

The four sports clubs in the town were given rent relief for the period April to June and 50% relief for July to September.

Some facilities are now reopen, such as the public toilets (between 9am and 5pm) and the outdoor market. If you would like to see the Town Council’s risk assessments for reopening facilities at this time, please contact us.

Telephone: 01258 454500 or 01258 489490

Email: admin@blandfordforum-tc.gov.uk

Age UK (North, South and West Dorset)

Age UK are coordinating requests for help with issues relating to loneliness and isolation, or support in accessing items such as food, cash or medication. To request help email: enquiries@ageuknswd.org.uk or call 01305 269444. Each request will be individually assessed and categorised according to the individual’s level of need.

Blandford Forum COVID-19 Volunteer Community Helpline

Telephone: 01258 452361 Monday to Saturday 10am – 2pm

Supporting people who are unable to collect prescriptions and help co-ordinating prescription deliveries. The pharmacy contact numbers are: ‘Big’ Boots on Salisbury Street 01258 452824, Gracies on Salisbury Street 01258 453108 and East Street 01258 452619.

Blandford – Covid19 Community Help Facebook Group and website:

https://www.blandfordc19community.com/

Join this group for queries/discussions and visit the website for useful, local   information including shop opening times, priority slots, opening times for pharmacies, banks, post offices, businesses, etc.

Health Wellbeing Friend

Telephone: 01258 451982 or 07968 334073

Tracey Revuelta-Ruffolo is kindly offering a daily phone call from a health team member, to offer a ‘Health & Emotional Wellbeing check’ – a quick chat just to check they’re okay. Please note that this is not to offer health diagnosis or advice but is more of a community life-line designed to support those who are vulnerable and isolating.

Citizens Advice Central Dorset

Telephone: 03444 111 444

Email: advice-nd@centralca.org.uk

Blandford Parish Church

Email: help@bfpc.org.uk

Dorset Police

https://www.dorset.police.uk/coronavirus/

A message from the Mayor of Blandford Forum, Cllr Lynn Lindsay on 27th March 2020.

A video of this has been posted on Facebook and Instagram.

My name is Lynn Lindsay. I am a Town Councillor and the Mayor of Blandford Forum.

I am born and bred Blandford and love living here but never before have I been so proud of this town and what it has achieved in such a short space of time under immense pressure.

And the clapping being heard throughout our town last night, in support and appreciation of the NHS, was incredibly moving. Well done Blandford.

Over the last few weeks I have seen pharmacists and staff in the chemist, supermarket and shop workers, and delivery drivers pushed to their limits working so hard to keep Blandford catered for.

We are frustrated with queues to get medicines but we understand the pressure chemists are under and that they are dealing with anxious and sometimes upset members of the public when they too are worried.

Our wonderful cafes, restaurants and retailers in this town have been through a very difficult period which eventually resulted in many closures and I am sure, like me, you cannot wait until you can give them your custom once more.

Like many, I am having to self-isolate due to an underlying condition and I am so impressed with the number of people who are volunteering to support their local community. Those who are in a position to do so, really are going above and beyond for those who are vulnerable at this unprecedented time. In some cases, it is shopping, picking up medication or just having a chat and being kind.

I admire the teachers in the local schools who are dealing with such extraordinary times, and the work they had to put together quickly for their pupils, and I feel for the students who had been working so hard towards their exams this year. I urge parents not to put yourselves under pressure to stick to schedules at home when you may also be trying to work from home and enjoy the extra family time you now have.

So many people, who are able, are continuing to carry out their duties for the benefit of the town including our doctors surgeries and their staff, emergency services, post office and council workers.

My heart goes out to those with the uncertainty of their businesses and employment.

The carers who have continued to put their patients first should be praised.

Our beloved NHS, and its dedicated staff, is what we really need to protect, in order to save lives.

We have all been affected by this situation and we can all do something about it:

Stay at home!
• Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (but only if you cannot work from home)
• Stay 2 metres away from other people
• Wash your hands as soon as you get home
You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.

Obviously we have had to postpone our VE Day celebrations for 8th May and hope to combine them with the VJ Day events in August but, whenever these do take place – Blandford – we will certainly be having an over-arching celebration of VC Day – Victory over Coronavirus!

Please take care of yourselves, and others.

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